Kentucky Appeals Court Overturns Ruling To Seize 141 Online Gambling Domains

The Court of Appeals in Kentucky has returned its ruling on the Commonwealth’s case that sought to seize 141 online gambling domains. The courts overturned the original ruling, stating that Kentucky does not have the right to seize online gambling domain names.

While the ruling was a major victory for the defense team, the Kentucky Court of Appeals did rule that online gambling domains are considered “gambling devices”. However, it was decided that the Commonwealth of Kentucky does not have the jurisdictional rights to seize online gambling domains located outside of its borders.

“We are humbled by this decision and by the overwhelming support received from Internet businesses and free speech organizations everywhere,” came the response of Jeff Ifrah, a member of the law team that represents the Interactive Gaming Council. “The Court of Appeals has now corrected a fundamental misunderstanding by the trial judge in this proceeding of the nature of the Internet and the legality of online poker in Kentucky.”

Back in September of 2008, Judge Thomas Wingate ruled in favor of the Commonwealth, signing the forfeiture order that would allow Kentucky to seize all 141 online gambling domains in question. The forfeiture hearing was originally scheduled to take place in December, but was postponed until the Appeals Court ruling.

All 141 online gambling domains brought up in the case are affected by the overturned ruling, including Absolute Poker and UltimateBet, under dual ownership of Tokwiro Enterprises, who gave in to the court’s pressure by geo-blocking residents of Kentucky from accessing its online poker rooms.

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